Monday, April 30, 2018

Rage From the Machine

I came here in high goddamn dudgeon, friends. I thought I'd grown inured to the daily barrage of insults and outrages that serve as the incessant droning background music of our time. I believed that I could get momentarily annoyed, then find a cat photo or a new Chvrches tune and modulate my righteous anger.

But the reaction by both the right-wing nutfactory and the supposedly impartial D.C. political press to Michelle Wolf's commentary at the White House Correspondents' Dinner was a perfect encapsulation of the sickness of our era and the media elite's complicity in it. And it's fucking pissed me off all day.

For those that (blessedly, for certain) don't live in this region's toxic bubble of handjobbery and mendacity, the right/media axis are shocked, shocked that Wolf attacked White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders' looks. Here's a sampling of the indignantly purple tweetprose:

There are lot more where those came from. And here's what Wolf actually said about Sanders:

"And, of course, we have Sarah Huckabee Sanders. We're graced with Sarah's presence tonight. I have to say I'm a little star-struck. I love you as Aunt Lydia in "The Handmaid's Tale."

Mike Pence, if you haven't seen it, you would love it.

Every time Sarah steps up to the podium, I get excited because I'm not really sure what we're going to get: you know, a press briefing, a bunch of lies or divided into softball teams. "It's shirts and skins, and this time, don't be such a little b----, Jim Acosta."

I actually really like Sarah. I think she's very resourceful. Like, she burns facts, and then she uses the ash to create a perfect smoky eye. Like, maybe she's born with it; maybe it's lies.

It's probably lies.

And I'm never really sure what to call Sarah Huckabee Sanders. You know, is it Sarah Sanders? Is Sarah Huckabee Sanders? Is it Cousin Huckabee? Is it Auntie Huckabee Sanders? Like, what's Uncle Tom but for white women who disappoint other white women? Oh, I know: Aunt Coulter." has a better, less pissed off discussion of the matter, if you care.

I don't think the media is actually that angry about Wolf's comments regarding Sanders. What really has them pissed off is a different portion of the speech. You can find an annotated transcript here, if you care.

"There's a lot of print media here. There's a ton of you guys, but I'm not going to go after print media tonight because it's illegal to attack an endangered species.

Buy newspapers.

There's a ton of news right now; a lot is going on, and we have all these 24-hour news networks, and we could be covering everything. But, instead, we're covering like three topics. Every hour, it's Trump, Russia, Hillary and a panel of four people who remind you why you don't go home for Thanksgiving.

“Milk comes from nuts now, all 'cause of the gays.”

You guys are obsessed with Trump. Did you used to date him? Because you pretend like you hate him, but I think you love him. I think what no one in this room wants to admit is that Trump has helped all of you. He couldn't sell steaks or vodka or water or college or ties or Eric, but he has helped you.

He's helped you sell your papers and your books and your TV. You helped create this monster, and now you're profiting off of him. And if you're gonna profit off of Trump, you should at least give him some money because he doesn't have any."

The reason the D.C. press corps is pissed today? Michelle Wolf fucking nailed them, dead to rights, in a place they don't talk about at cocktail parties. Because they're at those parties with the same people they're supposed to cover impartially, sucking down fancy whiskey and stroking their egos and raising money for their kids' schools, and kissing up for access, which is, at the end of the day, the coin of the realm for the strivers inside the bubble. It's a fine way to make a living.

But it's a fucking horrible way to inform a nation about its leaders.

Most of the bubblepress spent the day talking about this issue. Very few of them made much mention of the final line of Wolf's speech, which was, simply, "Flint still doesn't have clean water." The media's reaction proved she was right, in 72-point all caps.

If I sound pissed and bitter and resigned, it's because I am. The press is supposed to be the eyes and ears for all of us. It's supposed to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. In so many places around our world, it does just that. I work with some amazing people who are uncovering incredible stories about injustice, criminality, innovation, and human interest around the globe. But in the place where it may matter more than any other right now, the press is failing us.

But at least they can get a good table at Le Diplomate.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Thank You Alt Nation - TR's 6-pack.

I may have mentioned this already, but my kids like to listen to Alt Nation in the car. All the time. They know every song, and love those with a curse in it, probably for that reason alone. Little Lion Man by Mumford and Sons, Turn by The Wombats and (F*ck A) Silver Lining by Panic @ the Disco are three examples. I have stopped caring about the language, to be honest. I distinctly remember being fired up when hearing "you son of a bitch" at a very young age during Devil Went Down to Georgia. And I remember giggling when my mom played the Chorus Line soundtrack song "Tits and Ass" on vinyl. So who am I to judge? Oh right, I'm their Dad. I should judge a little bit. Whatever.

Back to the topic. Alt Nation is a decent station to have in the preset mix. Most of the new artists are at least somewhat tolerable.  I also enjoy when I hear tunes from "classic" bands like MGMT, The Killers and Vampire Weekend. The point here is that the station introduces me to a lot of new tunes that I end up digging. Sometimes I'll dive down the rabbit hole to learn more about the band.

So I'll fess up and admit I'm stealing Whitney's 6-pack theme, because lazy. I'm here today to write about Wallows. They are a trio from Los Angeles that goes all the way back to the early 10's. I really really dig their tune being played on Alt Nation right now. It is called Pictures of Girls. The video is below. The song has a great summery, Beach Boys-meets-Vampire Weekend ethereal vibe to it.

My second favorite tune on Wallows' new six-song EP is 1980's Horror Film. Witty lyrics that belie the song's tone. Reminds of old Ben Folds Five songs. Who else could slide the lyrics "and you think Rockford Files is cool" into a song so seamlessly? A lot of people, I guess. But he/they did it better than most.

Below is Pleaser, Wallows' first "hit," at least to some young folks in SoCal. It is a tune from way back in '17. Raw, yet catchy. Like my STDs!

Here is another '17 tune that's fun...

...and here's one more from the Spring EP (which has Pictures of Girls and 1980's Horror Film):

Lastly, here is them doing a tune called Pulling Leaves Off Trees. It's amusing that they make the video look like it was shot with an 80's video camera. Stranger Things ripple effect, I guess. Enjoy!

Friday, April 27, 2018


Happy Friday, Fockers. Since I have nowhere to go after dumping the kids at school, I thought I would share. Lucky you.

My youngest kid is in second grade. He is one of six kids in his class who gets "advanced words" for spelling tests b/c he's good at it (watch out, Harvard!). He's following in his old man's footsteps. I swept the 3rd/4th/5th grade spelling bees at Allenwood School in the mid 80's. You probably saw Cronkite talk about it one night.

I thought the difficulty level of the tests peaked a month ago when he had a seven syllable word (INDIVIDUALITY) in a test. Turns out that is not the case.

These are among his words for today's test:


Kinda loco, right?

Thursday, April 26, 2018

2018 NFL Draft: Open Thread

Happy Mel Kiper day, Gheorghies!  It our annual reminder of how bad the Cleveland Browns organization is and an excuse to post this video:

* Redskinguy at the 23 second mark is the best part of this video.  

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


Schoolhouse Rock founder and author of many of the program's iconic tunes Bob Dorough passed away yesterday at the age of 94. In his memory, we're running a post we wrote five years ago about seeing him live, in person, and playing the hits. 

Bob Dorough is an American original. The 89 year-old jazz pianist has recorded 22 albums of his own, and worked with such legends as Miles Davis, Allen Ginsberg, and Mose Allison.

But you know him for something else, entirely.

In the early 1970s, Dorough was asked to write songs about multiplication tables for a yet-to-be-named children's program. His first effort, 'Three is a Magic Number' is now legendary, and led to dozens of other compositions that formed the basis for one of the most beloved educational entertainment icons of our time.

On Sunday evening, the Millenium Stage at the Kennedy Center celebrated the 40th Anniversary of Schoolhouse Rock!, which was based in large part on Dorough's work. I took my daughter, and while she loved it, I bet I enjoyed it even more. In addition to 'Three', Dorough wrote such classics as 'Conjunction Junction', 'Lolly, Lolly, Lolly Get Your Adverbs Here', 'The Shot Heard Round the World' and 'Electricity'. He performed several of these, then teamed with local kid-rock (definitely not Kid Rock) band Rocknocerous on the grand finale, 'Interjections'.

Did I mention that he's 89 years young? The video of the performance is 45 minutes long (and I can't figure out how to embed it), but if you let it play in background while you work, I guarantee you'll be more productive than normal. And you'll have a smile on your face.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Transition Filler

Jason Isbell doesn't smoke weed any more, but he used to, so this kinda fits with the week's theme. He even alludes to his past in this song.

I went down an Isbell rabbit hole this weekend over a couple of adult beverages. For my money, the dude's the best songwriter going.

So enjoy 'Cover Me Up', which might be the second-best love song Isbell's ever written.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Weed Week - Politics You Can Use

We didn't plan it this way*, but sometimes things just come together and feel right.

(*As you know, we don't plan anything, any way.)

There's a ton of political momentum surrounding the legalization of marijuana, so - just as the Waldos would wish it - here's a brief roundup.

In the New York gubernatorial election, political neophyte (and former Sex in the City co-star) Cynthia Nixon seems to have rattled incumbent Andrew Cuomo's comfortable cage, hitting him hard from the left. While Cuomo still enjoys sizable working margins in the polls, he's already responded to pressure from Nixon by enfranchising New Yorkers with felony convictions who've completed the terms of their sentences.

Nixon's been outspoken on the topic of legal marijuana, as well. This week, she spoke the truth as most of us know it, saying, "There are a lot of good reasons for legalizing marijuana, but for me, it comes down to this: We have to stop putting people of color in jail for something that white people do with impunity."

She continued with this, "The simple truth is, for white people, the use of marijuana has effectively been legal for a long time. Isn’t it time we legalize it for everybody else?"

The logic here is hard to assail. 80% of New Yorkers arrested for marijuana-related crimes are black or Latino. Those minority groups are 4.5 times more likely to get arrested for weed than whites, though most studies agree that they use marijuana at the same rates. Drug enforcement is one in a long litany of insidious little ways the purported equality of our society is eroded.

Another way relates to how the rich keep getting richer. And we've got a weed story in that category, too, one that doubles as a lesson in hypocrisy.

I see you, Congressman
Former Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner once said (while in office, of course) that he was "unalterably opposed" to legalizing marijuana. Words, in our current through-the-looking-glass world, have no meaning. Or, perhaps, we shouldn't value anything said by an active politician any more than the carbon dioxide expressed by the breath it takes to say it.

Last week, Boehner announced that he'd joined the board of directors of Acreage Holdings, one of the nation's largest cannabis companies. Directly from the company's website, we learned that Acreage is building vertically integrated cannabis operations (cultivating, processing, and dispensing) to serve the 11 states where it's legal to do so today, and capitalize on a potential $40b market. For what it's worth, I think that market sizing is probably too conservative.

Acreage's website also boasts a distinguished management team. Of nine white dudes. The entire organization, based on the same site, has a total of two people of color among the 24 employees. John Boehner's gonna cash in on a product that his fellow Republicans once used to generate revenue for the Corrections Corporation of America. And that's some fucked up shit, right there.

I really hope they're successful commercially. And I really, really, really fucking hope someone starts a competitor with a diverse team that kicks their ass down the road.

And finally, to tie a dank, green bow on this topic, the 2018 election is shaping up as a referendum on legalization. As we've seen lately, stuff that we think is impossible politically remains impossible, right up until it isn't. The legalization of same sex marriage is a great example. As recently as Barack Obama's first term, even he was lukewarm on the idea. Then, society dragged him, his party, and the Supreme Court with it.

I think that's going to happen with weed, and soon.

Corey Booker and Kristin Gillibrand, senators who both happen to have Presidential aspirations, both came out recently in support of Federal legislation to legalize recreational pot use. That's both aligned with the party (72% of Democrats support legalization) and a decent read of the political winds.

Chuck Schumer just filed a bill make legalization Federal law. It won't happen under the current Congress, but it's a marker. Democratic gubernatorial candidates in Maryland and Wisconsin are running on legalization, as is Nixon in New York. Dozens of congressional candidates are making it an issue - it kills with the 18-29 demo, and it's common sense.

Mark this, friends. I predict that I'll smoke a joint together with my now 16 year-old daughter before she turns 25. And I'll do it legally, where I live today.

In these shitty times, that's something to look forward to.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Who's Waldo

We all know at this point that April 20, or 4/20, is linked inextricably to the pursuit of herbal-aided relaxation. By 'all', I might include my 16 year-old daughter, who came downstairs this morning and asked me if I knew what today was. It's fairly culturally universal here in the U.S. of A. I won't comment on whether we're all getting stoned because we know the world is going to shit. I'll leave that analysis to Sentence of Dave, the proprietor of which is apparently in a bit of a blue phase.

The origin of the 420 link to weed is a bit less well understood. Some claim it's related to a police code for marijuana infractions, for example. It's not.

Let's let the fathers of 420 tell the story:

As for me, I plan to celebrate.

Legally, of course. By purchasing a couple of sixers of Lagunitas' Waldos Special Ale and get my couch on. You, obviously, should celebrate in your own way.

Return of zman Bouillabaise

Here are a few things I've seen or heard or thought about that I didn't have time to turn into a post or weren't really big enough to turn into a post.

1. Ghost & Meth & Comey?

Ghostface Killah and Method Man somehow or other met James Comey. I'll make like Zuckerberg and let you create the content in the comments. Just no homey/Comey jokes please.

2. I figured out what to get Mark for Christmas

zmother gets her Christmas shopping done around August, certainly no later than September. She hates Christmas shopping so she gets it done early. Holidays are always fun in zhome! I'm less of a Scrooge and don't get started until December, unless I see something that screams out to be gifted to someone in particular. Like these socks for Mark.

Or these for Whit. Or maybe these for TR. Or these for Squeaky. Or these for Teedge. Even rob.

Feel free to get me these. There are lots of other bizarre/amazing Stance socks too.

3. Check out Caroline Rose's new album LONER

Sometimes it sounds like Foster the People.

Other times it sounds like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Still others it sounds kinda like the Killers.

4. Watch "The Americans"

We're very late to the party on this one, but if you haven't watched The Americans you should. It's all available on Amazon Prime and it's all good.

One of the interesting aspects of The Sopranos was the idea that a murderous gangster comes home from work and has to deal with all the same mundane and difficult stuff as everyone else--his son gets bad grades and acts a fool, his wife spends too much money, his mother breaks his balls, his sister is out of control, and so on. The Sopranos made this dynamic clear right from the start of episode 1 and carried it through to the end.

The Americans spins this theme. Every marriage has difficulties, or at least things happen in any marriage that make things difficult. For Philip and Elizabeth Jennings, they not only have to deal with their kids' undesirable behaviors, they sometimes have to figure out how to dispose of dead bodies or weaponized bacteria because they're Russian spies. The tension between them as partners-in-crime serving their Motherland and as husband and wife is set out from the start and makes the show engaging throughout.

For example, we don't do dentistry like this in zhome.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

This One's for Rootsy

This post is dedicated to our resident trail walker, who appears to prescribe to the "band is only as strong as its weakest link" argument. Would we have to reconsider the Beatles under that scenario? (sorry Ringo)

In the picture above, and in the videos below, you can get a look at "JD and the Straight Shot," the "band" put together by the bloated trust fund billionaire and walking punchline, James Dolan. You may remember him as the worst owner in the NBA this side of Donald Sterling.

Watching the videos, you can see the souls of the session players slowly dying. Fat Jim must pay the shit out of them to suck it up and pretend to not be miserable. The first video is my favorite, for obvious reasons. Go to the 25 second mark for the fun to start. The other videos highlight the absurdly high production value of the videos, which overshadow the banal mediocrity of the music. And if you've been paying attention over the years, the band has pivoted from blues to Americana. Good luck with that dude.

A recurrent text string on YouTube for this "band's" videos: "Comments are disabled for this video"

Wednesday, April 18, 2018


If you've paid close attention here over the past ten years or so, or if you've ever listened to me and Whitney yammer on over a few drinks, you're aware that one of our mutual life goals is to stumble upon a stupid amount of money and buy a compound for our homies and their loved ones. We'd while away our time in pursuit of pointless yet life-affirming joys.

Gheorghe: The Compound
At various times, we've decided we'd locate the compound on Cape Cod, or in Williamsburg, or on the Outer Banks. We're not generally picky, though it does seem that we've got a bit of an East Coast bias.

We were wrong, as it turns out. Our search is over. For the location of the compound, anyway. The money part is still a bit elusive. And that's where you come in.

On May 12, Cal Ripken's Reisterstown, MD estate goes up for auction, to be sold to the highest bidder. The kicker, in the sense that it matters to us, is that there's no reserve. Says so in big bold letters on the auction house's website.

The 25-acre property features a 21,900 square foot home with six bedrooms, 10 full baths, and five half-baths, a media room, an eight-car garage, and a pool with poolhouse. Way more importantly to this audience, it also features Cal's legendary 7,000 square foot gym, with a full basketball court, batting cages, enough fitness equipment to keep us all in fine fettle, and a 300-gallon steel tub from Baltimore's old Memorial Stadium for post-workout soaks. There's also a regulation baseball field, hydroponic heating (don't know what that is), and scenic pond.

Cal originally listed the place for $12.5 million, then dropped it to $9.7m before pulling it off the market. My sources tell me the winning bid will come in somewhere around $6 million large.

I submit to you that such a figure is in our wheelhouse, my friends, especially if we can figure out how to generate some income from the compound. Start hammering out the business plan. I'll make an appointment with the broker, but we're gonna need to figure out which of us looks the most like he/she might be worth enough money to seem legit when we go on the property tour.

And start pulling together your loose change. Our dream has never been closer to reality.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Ranking Topps 1980's Baseball Cards: #2 - 1989

85  months after we revealed our #3 ranking, we cave to the cacophony from the ones of you out there seeking finality and attempt to finish this project. Or at least plod one step closer to completion.  

So please accept my apologies. With a moment of free time no job, I would like to get this baby back on the tracks. Or better said at this point, get this rusty project over the finish line.

To recap, here are the rankings to date:

#10 - 1986
#9 - 1988
#8 - 1982
#7 - 1980
#6 - 1985
#5 - 1987
#4 - 1981

#3 - 1984

The 1989 season evokes mixed memories. It was the apex of the juiced-up Athletics teams of the late 1980's, with LaRussa's squad coming back from a defeat in the 1988 World Series to sweep their neighbor in the Bay Area the night of Game 1. However, the World Series was a bit of an afterthought to the destructive earthquake that shook the whole area. Surprisingly, Canseco and McGwire combined for only 50 HRs that year. But strong contributions from Dave Parker and Dave Henderson helped (37 combined HRs), and a very deep starting rotation (Stewart, Moore, Welch and Davis each had 17 or more wins) mattered. As did Dennis Eckersley's mustache, which proved too much for hitters to handle.

While only two other teams won 90 games (Cubs, Giants), Bo Jackson had his MLB peak this year, winning All-Star Game MVP. Robin Yount won his second MVP, Kevin Mitchell won his only MVP, Rickey stole 77 bases, Bret Saberhagen took the AL Cy Young and somebody called Mark Davis from the Padres (44 saves) won the NL Cy Young. Name does not ring a bell at all. He had 96 total saves in a 15-yr career. That name was as much as a surprise as Moose Stubing (pictured at the top of this post), who I'm guessing was Merrill's cousin.

As for the cards themselves, they were strong aesthetically, given the Body Glove era of the late 80's set a low bar for style. Script and wavy banners and gold cups all make for a good card. They stood out from prior years as Topps began fighting more intense competition from Donruss, Fleer and upstarts like Upper Deck.

So who will be #1? There is no way for you all to figure it out. You'll have to wait for the next post, which should come before the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. Or after. 

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Shitty Sunday Filler

The weather here in the National Capital region is, in a word, dismal. Rain, wind, high 40s/low 50s. And I'm getting on a plane at 6:15 tomorrow morning to fly to Minneapolis for three days, where the forecast highs don't get out of the 30s, and another snowstorm is predicted for Wednesday.

I spent the early afternoon on the sidelines, coaching soccer in a driving rainstorm, and so I'm thoroughly chilled.

But all is well, because I got to listen to a big chunk of Annie Clark's Coachella set on the way home after the match. And she fucking brought it.

So enjoy Masseduction here, and see if you can find the full set. She's amazing, and I now have a bucket list goal to see her live. Let me know if you wanna go with.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Go Home UCL, You're Drunk

This morning, UEFA will draw the matchups for the semifinals of this year's UEFA Champions League. Usual suspects Real Madrid (two-time defending champions) and Bayern Munich are joined by a lively Liverpool side and a most unlikely participant in Roma.

We know, man
Liverpool buried favored Manchester City under a sea of red (and a questionably overturned goal), winning 5-1 on aggregate across two legs in what was perhaps less of an upset than has been portrayed. Jurgen Klopp's men have now beaten the Citizens three straight times.

Roma, though, came out of of nowhere. Drubbed and left for dead by Barcelona in the first leg of the tie, the Italian side came home trailing by a 4-1 count. That lone away goal turned out to be decisive, though nobody asked before the game would've given I Giallorossi a tosser's chance.

The American-owned Romans gave their fans early hope on a sixth-minute goal by Edin Dzeko, but went into the half up only 1-0, and down 4-2 on aggregate. Captain Daniele De Rossi buried a penalty in the 58th minute to bring the crowd to the edge of its collective seats.

And then, in the 82nd minute, this happened:

It's gonna be hard for the final legs to top this week. Not only did Roma deliver a comeback for the ages, Juventus came from three goals down to tie Real Madrid on the road before that bastard Cristiano Ronaldo scored a penalty kick in stoppage time to rescue the holders. 

We're hoping Liverpool draw Roma so we're guaranteed one of those two clubs in the final. But we'll take anything at this point. Sports!

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Andre, Pro Wrestling and Me - Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing/Lower Middle Class Wrestling Fan

As some of you may know, I grew up w/ a very small pot to piss in. I had two parents with Masters' degrees, but their chosen fields and a nasty divorce left very little money around, and led to yours truly being forced into an Army ROTC scholarship to pay for college. That went...less than optimally.

But I did have cable TV, at least when mom paid the bill. And I had pro wrestling. From third grade to tenth grade, I was a FREAKISHLY huge fan of pro wrestling. I watched everything available on the telly. WWF would air a few times a week. WCCW would air late Saturday night, from 10-11, which my dad would let me stay up and watch. AWA would air Saturday morning. NWA would air early Saturday evening. And don't get me started on stumbling into WWF's Saturday Night Main Event specials that occasionally aired in place of SNL. Holy shit, that blew my mind. I remember that as the time that they rolled out King Kong Bundy as a world class heel.

I mean to say that I was INTO it. I ordered back issues of Pro Wrestling Illustrated. I bought a VCR copy of Lords of the Ring: Superstars and Superbouts (which somehow made it down to William & Mary). I bought fake blood and used it on my three WWF figures (Sheik, Volkoff and Hogan, which I kept and handed down to my kids). And I also played some weird dice game with wrestling, where you had a sheet for each wrestler and would roll to do "moves" to take down your opponent. We all loved having the Great Kabuki, b/c if you rolled 12, he would spit his colorful spray and you would win. So yeah, I was into it. Once I started liking girl's boobies more than Dusty Rhodes' boobies, or at least started getting opportunities to touch girl's boobies, my passion faded. But it was a big run for this guy.

I also made it to my share of pro wrestling events. My dad could not afford premier pro sports events frequently. We would cut coupons off of quarts of Tuscan milk boxes to get cheap Nets or Devils seats. But pro wrestling was more affordable. My first Yankees game in the Bronx wasn't until June 1990 and my first Knicks game at MSG wasn't until early 1991, but wrestling options were around, and generally more affordable.

The first wrestling event I ever saw was at Freehold High School. I think I was in the third grade. The headliner was Pat Patterson, who I didn't know at the time. I think there were 1-2 more "stars" there too. I remember liking it a lot. My second show was at Convention Hall in Asbury Park. There was a decent showing of stars there. The Iron Sheik was there, and my Iranian dad (who I realized in retrospect was a sneaky fan of celeb sightings) worked it hard to get me and him (but mostly him) backstage to meet the Sheik, who was from Tehran, like my dad. Security would not let us go backstage, but did legitimately go to look for the Sheik. While the Sheik did not come out, Salvatore Bellomo did. That was my childhood in a nutshell. It's like the Christmas when I wanted Mike Tyson's Punchout, and my mom got me Ring King.

But I digress. The main event of the evening that night was Greg Valentine vs. Andre the Giant. My dad let me run to the area where the wrestlers come out so I could get close. Valentine came out first. He was smug as hell, a classic heel in a fancy gown. And then Andre came out. The crowd went wild.  This was back when he still had the wild afro and wore the trunks w/o the shoulder strap. I got up to the barrier and he walked right in front of me, from right to left. The flashes illuminated his body as he stoically ambled to the ring. I touched his back as he passed me, patting him once. I still remember it. He was a real live superhero to me.

The third wrestling show of my life was when the AWA and NWA did some joint tour. I remember little b/c my dad bought the very worst seats in the Brendan Byrne arena. I remember that Ric Martel and Magnum TA both won separate matches. I brought my Kodak Disc to take pics. That went about as well as my tenure as an ROTC cadet.

So you can see why I am so pumped for this Andre doc. He was a legend I got to see up close and personal one time. As a famous football player once said: CAN'T WAIT.

Monday, April 09, 2018

Jose I Lost My Ball!

Yessir! Should you have the time, patience, and inclination, one may be able to find the image below on the tellie, perhaps YouTube. Haven't looked yet b/c...I have none of the above.

The man that looks as if he's attempting to place an extremity in his mouth, is one Buckles, and though he probably wishes he could perform such an act, he is actually looking under his chair. Why? To see the ball that Justin Thomas just placed there with a slightly errant shot. The person to his left with white cap would be yours.

Seven Green, Friday afternoon, Augusta, GA. No fun was had btw.

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Self-Shame Saturday

I am a man of many ideas. They flow continuously from my braintap, roaming free-range across the fields of my mind.

I am also, it must be said, a man of very little demonstrated ability to follow through on my ideas.

And so, because I really would like to execute on this one idea, I'm putting it in front of you in hopes that the community of Gheorghies will hold me to it. I set myself up for ridicule in order to pay off my notion.

The image above is a stylized rendering of a voiceprint of my daughters' saying "It is what it is." I used to turn an audio file into imagery.

As some of you know, I wear a bracelet engraved with that phrase in memory of my father. That was his stock answer when someone asked him how he was doing during his battle with cancer.

And I'm ready to turn that image into a tattoo, preferably on my inner right forearm.

That's the idea I want to execute. I've created the image. I've identified a studio in my town that does pretty decent work. Now I just have to actually do it.

Help a brother out, Gheorghies.

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Gheorghe's 6-Pack: Portugal. The Man

Well, the Gheorghe silence has been deafening.  Spring Break and other goings-on. It's really not time right now to drink a six-pack, unless you're retired or a raging alcoholic. Or in college.

Actually, college spring break was a month ago... and I never quite understood why it was so early.  15 of our fratres trucked it down to Daytona in 1992 and walked around in long-sleeved shirts.  And doing things most of our fortysomething selves still either chuckle or blanche at when mentioned.  Anyway, for those of you who go a bit beyond the domestic debauchery of Daytona, here's a more exotic destination. Portugal.

In the interest of spreading the love of good music, we will throw out six suggested songs by certain bands you may or may not know much about. Not much of a time commitment, just a little something to get the flavor and get you going.

Gheorghe's 6-Pack: Portugal. The Man

Where: from Wasilla, Alaska, currently residing in Portland, Oregon
When: 2004 - Present
Who: John Gourley, Zachary Carothers, Kyle O'Quin, Eric Howk, Jason Sechrist, Zoe Manville

You probably heard them last year more than once, as their song "Feel It Still" permeated the airwaves (and the streamwaves) as a summer/fall hit. Perhaps you heard them before that on ORF Rock, as we broke that song in March. That's right.

Perhaps you heard Portugal. The Man before that, because they've been making music for over a decade.  They've had a handful of songs I have dug over that time, so enjoy.

"My Mind," Church Mouth, 2007

"People Say," The Satanic Satanist, 2009

"Got It All (This Can't Be Living Now)," In the Mountain In the Cloud, 2011

"Purple Yellow Red and Bluw," Evil Friends, 2013

"Modern Jesus," Evil Friends, 2013

"Feel It Still," Woodstock, 2017

Monday, April 02, 2018

National Championship Open Thread

I head off this morning to Minneapolis, where the forecast for the next few days is snow and cold. It's fucking April. I'll be watching tonight's National Championship game from a hotel bar. A good hotel bar, with Surly on offer, but a hotel bar nonetheless. I trust that the good people of Gheorghe will have better accommodations.

I'm very torn with respect to rooting interest this evening. Villanova is so well-coached, and so entertaining, and Jay Wright seems like a really good dude. Our friends from Hofstra consider the guy a prince, even though he left there 15 years ago. On the other hand, now that Bo Ryan has retired (and been found out to be kinnnnd of a scumbag), John Beilein is my favorite college hoops coach, non-Tony Shaver division. (Yesterday, Beilein was asked who would play him and Jay Wright in a movie about the game, to which he responded, "At the end of the game, he’ll still look like George Clooney and I will look like Columbo".) Moe Wagner is a nice mix of skill and borderline insanity.

All I need, I guess, is entertaining hoops. And some tasty waves and a cool buzz.